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Objective `Safe' Grazing Capacities for South-West Queensland Australia: Development of a Model for Individual Properties

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Johnston, P. W., Mckeon, G.M. and Day, K.A. (1996) Objective `Safe' Grazing Capacities for South-West Queensland Australia: Development of a Model for Individual Properties. The Rangeland Journal, 18 (2). pp. 244-258.


Article Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/RJ9960244

Publisher URL: http://www.publish.csiro.au


Few tools are available to assist graziers, land administrators and financiers in making objective grazing capacity decisions on Australian rangelands, despite existing knowledge regarding stocking rate theory and the impact of stocking rates on land condition. To address this issue a model for objectively estimating 'safe' grazing capacities on individual grazing properties in south-west Queensland was developed. The method is based on 'safe' levels of utilisation (15%-20%) by domestic livestock of average annual forage grown for each land system on a property. Average annual forage grown (kglha) was calculated as the product of the rainfall use efficiency (kglhdmm) and average annual rainfall (mm) for a land system. This estimate included the impact of tree and shrub cover on forage production. The 'safe' levels of forage utilisation for south- west Queensland pastures were derived from the combined experience of (1) re-analysis of the results of grazing trials, (2) reaching a consensus on local knowledge and (3) examination of existing grazing practice on 'benchmark' grazing properties. We recognise the problems in defining, determining and using grazing capacity values, but consider that the model offers decision makers a tool that can be used to assess the grazing capacity of individual properties.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Animal Science
Additional Information:© CSIRO
Keywords:Grazing capacities; stocking rates; livestock; forage; South West Queensland.
Subjects:Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Farm economics. Farm management. Agricultural mathematics
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Conservation of natural resources
Animal culture > Cattle
Animal culture > Rangelands. Range management. Grazing
Animal culture > Feeds and feeding. Animal nutrition
Agriculture > By region or country > Australia > Queensland
Live Archive:21 Nov 2011 05:54
Last Modified:30 Nov 2022 04:50

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